Latest posts by backyardee

chickens and slug pellets

Posted: 30/05/2012 at 07:55

the odd slug like one or two a year killed on 'safe'pellets would probably be fine, but on a daily or regular basis, I would worry, The toxins in the pellets no matter how small, will be building up daily. And as it takes several days for a hen to produce an egg, I would avoid those too.  Why not use garlic granules around your veg/ornamental plants. Scattered around the base, slugs and snails will avoid the plants. Buy equine granules, by the kg works out cheaper than pellets too. so much safer.

No blooms

Posted: 29/05/2012 at 08:18

 The mosty likely culprit is the weather, They can be fickle about conditions when the buds are getting fat, If they have a cold spell, they will just throw up their little hearts in despair and refuse to open. Turning brown and falling off. 

As your garden is full of colour, have you added more plants to the surrounding area in the last couple of years, that is taking the nutrients from the soil away from the peonys. this too can cause refusal of flowers opening.  It would be a survival tactic.

have the light levels changed, ie, taller plants established around it, giving it shade?

shade loving ground cover

Posted: 29/05/2012 at 08:08

Lamium maculatum is lovely, It doesn't mind what the soil conditions are but thrives in dappled or full shade. It has tiny silver leaves and throws up purple flowers about now.

This plant is so much better behaved than any of the Vincas.


shade loving ground cover

Posted: 29/05/2012 at 08:07

Lamium maculatum is lovely, It doesn't mind what the soil conditions are but thrives in dappled or full shade. It has silver markings on the tiny leaves and throws up purple flowers about now.

This plant is so much better behaved than any of the Vincas.


'weeds' at Chelsea

Posted: 25/05/2012 at 07:31

It was intersting to see how they have used wild flowers including buttercup (yuk),

and so many have gone for the wild 'weed' look. I have enjoyed the coverage even the red button with toby and tom, But why do thay have to have rdt on so much. Still you can't win everything.


Posted: 16/05/2012 at 08:01

I tend to avoid taxus / yew or any conifer prunings. They take too long to break down and the taxus is toxic to animals. And I have poultry that get the run of the plot from Oct to Mar. So yew is a no-no.

And any leathery evergreens also take too long to compost, so I tend to burn all my prunings. 


Posted: 16/05/2012 at 07:57

There are more this year due to the mild winter not disposing of them.

I occasionally use bran, They gorge themselves and then you can dispose of them of drop in your compost. But be ever so careful. They are so fat they can burst if you squeeze too hard.


Posted: 16/05/2012 at 07:52

I lay a section of compost bag or a length of black plastic sheet over the area. leave overnight, Next morning they will have come to the surface so you can dispose of them.

You are sure they are leatherjackets and not vineweevil grubs? VW grubs need to treated differently.

Euphorbia amygdaloides-invasive?

Posted: 15/05/2012 at 11:35

Lavandem, I have a fens ruby growing.

I had a little clump I moved from one country to another. It behaved itself so well for the first three years, and I loved it so much, that I split the clump and moved to another border. It obviously enjoyed the new location so much so, that it is walking around the garden borders. But I don't mind it walking about as it deters the mole. He just sticks to the grass. (Not lawn, but short paddock grass) so not worried.

Meconopsis (Himalayan Blue Poppy)

Posted: 15/05/2012 at 08:45

Lisa j, Next time you try to grow them from seed, Try the fridge treatment. 1 month in, 1 month out.

Alinaw. Thankyou for your link. I was interested to see that they can be annual, biennial or perennial. But I can assure you the ones I have are perennial and flower from year 2 and usually continue for several years. Increasing the number of blooms as they mature. But then I have collected my own seed for years. So before the introduction of new varieties that produced shorter living plants, they were termed as difficult perennials. I am interested in the trials they are now doing on the Meconopsis as Harlow Carr and await with slightly baited breath at the results in 2013. 

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